By Arnold M. Knightly, Boulder City Review
The Eagles lost their opening game of the 3A Southern League playoffs to Moapa Valley, 5-4, setting up a long road if the team wants to return to next weekend’s state tournament.
Boulder City junior pitcher Tanner Howell struck out 13 batters, but it was a three-run homer in the third inning that changed the game for the Eagles.
Following a pair of fielding errors to start the third inning, the Pirates took a 3-o lead with the home run.
The Eagles scored a run in the bottom of the third with a sacrifice fly by Howell, which scored junior Corbett Flemming.
Boulder City scored again in the bottom of the fifth when senior Colton Schulz scored on a senior Aubrey Wrightsman sacrifice.
However, Moapa Valley answered with two runs in the top of the six to push the lead to 5-2.
The Eagles scored a run in the bottom of the sixth when junior Billy Barth scored on an RBI triple by Schulz. Boulder City cut the lead to 5-4 when senior Nate Hafen drove in senior Michael Hernandez on a two-out RBI single.
After Barth singled to put runners at first and second, senior Thomas Shelley struck out to end the game.
Schulz was 2-for3 with an RBI and a triple, and Barth was 3-for-3, reaching base a fourth time on an error.
The Eagles (15-11) face Virgin Valley (1-22) at 6 p.m. with the winner having to defeat Moapa Valley (9-19) twice tomorrow in the championship rounds starting at 10 a.m. in Boulder City. If the Eagles win, the two teams play again at 1 p.m.